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Chapter 13

PSYCH 2AA3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 13: Existential Therapy, Personal Construct Theory, Existentialism

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Jennifer Ostovich

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Humanistic Psych overcome paradox by acknowledging ways psych is unique
o Disagreed that mind = another science
o Mind is fundamentally different is aware
Phenomenology: Awareness is everything
Phenomenology: one’s conscious experience of the world (humanists)
o Immediate, conscious experience is all that matters
Past, present, future all impacts thoughts/feelings atm
Present experience matters is the basis of free will; past gone & future not here
Construal: individuals particular experience of the world
o Choosing own construals of the world (interpretation of experiences) leads you to free will
Introspection: observe own perceptions and thought processes (primary method used by Wundt, who
found first psych lab)
Extentialism rationalism went too far trying to explain everything
o Lost touch with human experience
Three parts of Experience
1) Umwelt: biological experience pleasure, pain, heat, cold, bodily sensations
2) Mitwelt: social experience emotions, thoughts directed at other people/you
3) Eigenwelt: inner, psych experience experience of experience itself
How you feel, think when you try to understand self/mind/existence
Thrown-ness: refers to time, place and circumstance into which you were born
o Experience depends on whether you were thrown into medieval slave society or industrial
o Being thrown into industrial society = difficult world has no meaning/purpose
Religion = small role; it substitutes are art, science and philosophy and they don’t provide
explanations to why am I here; what should I be doing
Angst or existential anxiety = unpleasant feelings caused by contemplating on short life/wasting it
o Anguish choices are never perfect (trade-offs)
o Forlornness your choices are yours alone (alone with your existential choices)
o Despair inability to change something (fate is out of your control)
Optimistic toughness facing all experiences directly = existential responsibility which requires
Living in bad faith doing what society wants you to do & not thinking for yourself
o Ignoring the troubling facts = cowardly life
o If you surround yourself with material comforts you won’t be truly happy
o Choosing not to worry is still a choice
Authentic existence
o You are mortal, your life is short, you’re the master of your destiny
Existentialism takes a lot of courage cast aside defense mechanisms
Sartre only through existential analysis can people regain awareness of their freedom
Existentialism begins with the experience of the single individual at a single moment
Buddhism annata aka “nonself” the independent self you picture in your mind = illusion
o Self = temporary composite of many things (physiology, environment, social setting, society
all constantly changing)
o “self” separates you from others everything/everyone = interconnected (all across time too)
o Annica nothing lasts forever
o Nirvana serene, selfless state
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